Emma Jackson and Josh Maeder win Gold Coast Triathlon

Australia’s next generation of triathlon superstars showed little respect for triathlon royalty this morning as Emma Jackson raced to victory from Courtney Dutton and Brigitte Fischer while Olympic silver medallist Loretta Harrop finished fourth in her return to elite racing at the Gold Coast Triathlon – Luke Harrop Memorial at the Southport Broadwater Parkland.

Brisbane’s Josh Maeder lead from the start to win from Campbell Schmidt and Bryce McMaster over the Sprint distance format – 750m swim, 20km cycle, 5km run.

Maeder continued his good form after a second place last weekend in the ITU Singapore Cup, the heat taking its toll on the 22 year old, only coming good on Friday.

The strong current made it tough going in the swim and quickly strung the field out. Maeder, Drew Viles and Schmidt were first out of the water and quick to convert the break into a 30 second lead over the chase group.

“It was tough, I didn’t get the ideal start at the start of the swim and had to work my way through the pack,” said Maeder.

Maeder then set about pushing the pace on the bike and got the break on the second of the two lap bike course setting him up for the final 5km run.

“The plan was to get away on the bike so no one got on and it worked today.” said Maeder.

From the outset Maeder never looked troubled although Schmidt was taking ground off him he ran out of time. Maeder cruising to victory by 25 seconds in the end with Viles a further 36 seconds adrift.

“I wanted to run the first lap really hard keep to keep gap, second lap just wanted to see what I had left,” said Maeder at the finish.

Maeder will now enjoy a two week break then wait to see if he is selected onto the Young Guns Tour.

The women’s race was a much closer affair, Brigitte Fischer, Emma Jackson, Courtney Dutton and Loretta Harrop all together after the swim. Harrop showing she has lost none of the desire to compete despite her part-time training regime.

Once out on the bike Jackson showed what a talent she is establishing a commanding lead in blustery conditions over the two lap course and then executed a 18.31 5km run leg to win by over a minute from Courtney Dutton.

Both girls still feeling the effects of hard racing last weekend. Jackson in her first World Championship Series appearance in Sydney where she acquitted herself well in the lead bunch but fading on the run to finish 24th, Dutton finished third at the ITU Singapore Cup.

Fischer finished strong to hold out Harrop who had a phenomenal race on limited training to finish fourth.

“It was a good race, like the World’s course last year, reminds me of it, so good memories.

“I struggled in the swim but happy to win it after last week, it was a good recovery.

I’ve never raced her before it was an honour to race her in this race and to win the Bursary,” said Jackson.

Harrop has not been on a bike for 3 years saying it is hard to fit bike sessions in with two young kids but would like to do more racing when they were a bit older.

“I had a really good swim; the bike sucked, need to do some more work there.

“I couldn’t have expected much more and it was good to chat with the girls as they went passed me.

“I certainly didn’t race how I used to cause I felt stiffness everywhere, just wanted to have a good little run, obviously the race means a lot to me and to remember Luke, not that we don’t everyday but this is something a bit more special,” said Harrop.

Harrop was full of praise for the young girl’s efforts today.

“They’re doing really well, not scared of going off on the bike themselves and I thought they did a really good job.

Emma (Jackson) is going great, there’s a bit of an opening there with Snowsill coming back from a virus and Moffatt from injury, she is hitting her straps and taking her opportunity and running with it,” added Harrop.

The Gold Coast event is the final race in the Luke Harrop Memorial Bursary. The other two events being Mooloolaba and Noosa triathlons, all three were Luke’s favourite races.

A cash grant of $1000 is awarded to the U23 male and female winner at each of these events with a further bonus of $1500 given to the overall winners (male and female) of the Luke Harrop Memorial Bursary.

Jackson’s win gave her the event and series Bursary, while Maeder collected the event and Campbell Schmidt the series title and cheque.

The event also doubled as the Grand Final of the 2009/2010 Gatorade Queensland Tri Series.

The grand final turned into a fitting end to the 09/10 season with the biggest field of the series. 2,500 triathletes turned out to take part this morning, a clear affirmation from competitors the Gold Coast Tri is the hall mark event of the series.

The athletes swam, cycled and ran in one of three different distances including the Kool Kids event, making this sport an attractive option for the whole family.

The 2009/10 Gatorade Queensland Tri Series has been a great breeding ground for our talented juniors, a fantastic opportunity for first time triathlete’s, weekend warriors and eager kids. Triathlon is a challenging, diverse and fun way to keep fit for people of all ages and abilities.

“All seven events in the series saw a 25 percent increase in participation and the Saturday Tri Clinics were a huge hit for new competitors and those wanting to fine tune some skills,” said Project Manager Melissa Stephen.

“We would like to thank everyone that took part in the series; we hope you enjoyed the racing, camaraderie and triathlon experience,” she added.


Overall Results – Male

1.    Josh Maeder                 Cannon Hill              56:12

2.    Campbell Schmidt         Annerley                  56:37

3.    Bryce Mcmaster            Daisy Hill                 56:57

4.    Drew Viles                    Tallebudgera            57:13

5.    Taylor Cecil                   Banora Point            58:17


Overall Results – Female                             

1.    Emma Jackson              Joyner                     1:01:27

2.    Courtney Dutton          Bridgeman Downs    1:03:39

3.    Brigitte Fischer             Yaroomba                1:05:54

4.    Loretta Harrop              Coomera Waters      1:06:10

5.    Chloe Turner                Buderim                   1:17:17


A full set of results are available at www.usmevents.com.au. Go to this link and follow the instructions.


Karl Hayes

Karl is a keen age group triathlete who races more than he trains. Good life balance! Karl works in the media industry in Australia and is passionate about the sport of triathlon.